There was no official appeal to the final play of Columbia River’s 29-24 victory over Skyview on Friday, but The Columbian has learned that there was a meeting scheduled for Saturday between the athletic directors from both schools and a member of the Evergreen Football Officials Association to go over the play.
It turned out, after all parties viewed numerous video angles, there was no need for a meeting.
A recap of the play: Columbia River was trailing by one and attempting a field goal with just seconds left in the game. Skyview blocked the field goal and the Storm, along with their fans, started celebrating as if the game was over. The ball never crossed the line of scrimmage, which meant the ball was live. Seconds later, Columbia River’s Reese Keller scooped up the the ball and ran into the end zone for a touchdown.
Final score: Columbia River 29, Skyview 24.
Mick Hoffman, director of athletics for Vancouver Public Schools, said all parties had agreed to meet to go over the video.
At one point late Friday, there was talk that a Skyview player had grabbed the ball when he was on the ground, which would have ended the play. However, when the athletic directors from both schools saw the video, they texted Hoffman and said they agreed that the ball was never dead.
No meeting occurred.
“It clearly showed the refs got the call right,” Hoffman said. “River made the play. It’s a game for the ages, and a million different stories will come out of it.”
Even if the ADs had met, it wouldn’t have necessarily spawned an appeal. Only if a rule is misapplied may a team have grounds for an appeal.
Hoffman was on the sideline at the end of the game. He called it chaotic, with the Skyview fans rushing the field, and then River going the other way with the ball. With all that going on, he was impressed with the officials.
“In general, a lot of people question the quality of officials everywhere,” Hoffman said. “They got it right.”
Jim Gray, Skyview’s athletic director, confirmed Hoffman’s account of what happened in the hours after the game and into Saturday.
Regardless of the outcome, Gray said it was a great game between two rivals.